A Picture from the Future?

walmart

The picture above is said to have been taken the other week at Walmart somewhere in the U.S. after the Valentine’s candy went on clearance. Sad.

What the customers are riding? Motorized shopping carts. As the obesity epidemic continues to get worse this could be a fairly common view in the not-so-distant future.

More

Obesity Is Not Caused by a Lack of Exercise

A Calorie Is Not a Calorie

Obesity is Like Drowning

Why You Should Forget About Calories

Why Calorie Counting is an Eating Disorder

Only in America?

18 comments

  1. Domen
    Scene from Wall-e in real life:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h1BQPV-iCkU

  2. KevinF
    I have a feeling there's a "rest of the story" here not being said. Yes there are fat people in Wal-Mart riding those little scooters. But I've never seen a time when everyone in sight was a fat person on a scooter, nor seen so many of them clustered together. Would like to know what's REALLY going on here.
  3. Wade Henderson
    "The picture above is said to have been taken the other week at Walmart somewhere in the U.S. after the Valentine’s candy went on clearance. Sad."

    How do we know it isn't a group of disabled veterans who have been transported to the store to do some shopping? It may have nothing to do with shopping for candy or other unhealthy choices.

    I'd say that is more likely than having 4 scooters filled with obese shoppers lined up at one checkout.
    But then some countries don't have any disabled veterans and aren't familiar with such groups.

    Reply: #13
  4. FrankG
    Reading comprehension seems to be at a premium around here some days :-P

    "A Picture from the Future?"

    "The picture above is said to have been taken the other week at Walmart somewhere in the U.S. after the Valentine’s candy went on clearance."

    "As the obesity epidemic continues to get worse this could be a fairly common view in the not-so-distant future."

    Apparently this is all too subtle for some, the point being that this image (whatever it's original source and back-story) COULD be illustrative of the way we (especially in countries like the USA) are heading.

    A point clearly understood and underlined by Damon with his popular-culture reference to the animated movie Wall-E

  5. murray
    I don't see any indication they are buying candy.

    Do Walmart stores provide motorized shopping carts? Otherwise it seems the odds of four people lined up in similar looking carts is very remote.

  6. Heather
    Looks like they are lining up for the vision center.
    Diabetes is hard on the eyes.
    Reply: #12
  7. Cheryl
    Reminds me of the movie WALL-E.

    No matter the reason each are it he motorized carts each is wider at their seat than the seat itself.

  8. Janknitz
    I always think of those scenes from Wall-e and what we all might look like if we stop exercising and live on sugary crap. What finally motivated me to lose the weight is when I couldn't walk anymore to take my daughter around Disneyland and I had to use one of those scooters. I never felt to low in my life. I couldn't walk more than a few feet without great back pain and shortness of breath.

    When I looked around Disneyland at other people using scooters, the great majority of them were middle aged and older women, who were fat like me. It was sobering. I wanted to be around for my daughter's next trip to D-Land, and I wasn't sure at that point I would make it.

    So I began low carb and an exercise program that most people would think is pretty wimpy, but it was a place to start. Last year I proudly WALKED all around D-land with my daughter, from the time it opened until it closed at midnight--plus the short walk (a few blocks) to and from our hotel. I felt so great in comparison. I rode the rides without worrying if the seatbelts were going to fit around me, about 60 pounds less (and counting) than my previous trip. My daughter just had fun, but to me, it was a great accomplishment.

    Lest we condemn all those heavy people in scooters, I DARE you to find one of them who did not try dieting and exercise according to the conventional wisdom. I'm sure they all did, many times, as did I. But until they find a dietary approach like LCHF which will help them correct the underlying metabolic condition so that real, sustainable weight loss is possible, they will be condemned to those chairs. While there's no question that what they've put into their mouths with their own hands is responsible for their condition, so is our society which has consistently given the wrong information and message that perpetuates and magnifies their metabolic conditions.

    Reply: #11
  9. Heather
    Janknitz, Congratulations!
    What an inspiration you are!
    How wonderful to be able to create so many happy memories with your daughter!

    I was a fantastic dieter, lost 100 pounds several times by starvation.
    It was not about will power! I've got plenty of that!
    It wasn't till I went Low carb that I stepped off that merry-go-round.

  10. Ali
    When I looked at the picture without first reading the headline, I thought the people were sitting in a waiting room of some sort. I didn't realise they were queuing for chocolate/sweets. This is a very sad state of affairs and a clear example of the addictive powers of sugar.
  11. Michelle
    Well done. x
  12. Caitlin
    The perspective makes it harder, but there's a cashier there on the left. Walmart has small stores like hair salons, banks and optometrists along the front wall, at least around here.
  13. Lari
    Wade - none of these look like veterans. They look like people who are not injured, simply obese.

    Heather - these are not disabled veterans nor are they lining up for vision checks. Walmart has a place where one can present a prescription and buy glasses, but no one checks the client's eyes. I went to my local Walmart and asked. Some locations have independant optometrists, but one has to access their office via (paid) appointment and outside the building, not through the eyeglasses sales floor. The Vision center is located on the other side of the cash registers.

    Medicaid pays for wheelchairs, so this doesn't appear to be a group outing from a 'home' or activity center as they would have their own, not matching carts. But this is typical of the Walmart in the town where my son lives. That one had 15 motorized carts with room for more and many are always in use. That a line of 4 very obese people formed is odd, but the times I visit with him, we walk past checkout lines with 2 motorized carts, so 4 doesn't surprise me. And I see plenty of obese people in the store.

    When I went to the Walmart in my area to see the vision center, I also saw that they had 12 carts with plugs for 8 more (in use while I was there). If a store has 20 carts then they know they will need at least 10 at any given time. 3 were taped off with a 'Broken!' sign on them. While I was looking at them, a large couple walked up, sat on 2 carts and wheeled off. These 2 were grossly obese, the carts groaned under their weight and they used them like they were old pros.

    The local grocery chain in my area recently added more of these carts. One location took over part of the outdoor gardening area to stock these motorized carts (fewer vegetable plants but maybe they weren't selling anyway) and another moved vending and ice machines. That's just 2 that I visit, maybe the rest added more also.

    A day doesn't go by that I don't see the very overweight in these carts. A few years ago, when I had a broken leg and wanted to use one, I wasn't able to because at that time, the 5 the store had were either broken or in use. My husband took me back home and then returned to get the groceries. He later reported that he saw obese people in the 3 working units. I will assume that the 2 broken ones were broken from people's weight and not a mechanical issue.

    I do not condemn people who are obese; they need education, not lectures. But it's a shame that the stores would rather sell whole-grain, low-fat snack cakes and use the profits to buy more carts.

    Reply: #14
  14. murray
    Helpful report, thank you. It seems Walmart has figured out that the carts attract shoppers (just like carts at golf courses attract golfers) and so more than pay for themselves. I can see that obese people would tire while shopping, as they carry quite a load and the elevated insulin blocks access to the stored fat for energy. It's a SAD Catch-22.
  15. jenny
    About 5 years ago I had to use one of these carts at Walmart because I had sprained my ankle playing a fiercly competitive game of raquetball. It was heartbreaking using that cart, especially being an obese person. People were rude, cutting me off or blocking my way and then I overheard these two men commenting on the fat girl thinking she needed a motorized cart because she's too fat and lazy to walk. I was absolutely humiliated and demoralized... even though I could have probably run circles around these guys with an unsprained ankle.

    Can we please stop using images like this - at the expense of living, breathing, feeling human beings - to make a point? We don't know the circumstances that have put them in this situation and they deserve the same common courtesy as anyone else.

    Reply: #16
  16. FrankG
    Fair enough Jenny -- although it is only your interpretation that it comes at the "expense of living, breathing, feeling human beings" especially where it appears efforts have been made to ensure anonymity -- so how do you suggest making this point?

    No doubt there are many here (myself included) who can completely sympathize with the stigma and prejudice of being viewed as overweight/obese. Surely we sometimes need to hold a mirror up to society and ask hard questions?

  17. Bree
    I so agree with Jenny. It feels to me that most people who have posted do indeed "suffer" from obesity prejudice. Fat people - fat people - fat people. I am one of those "fat people" who must deal with people's prejudice when I use a shopping cart. Their "phobias" do come "at the expense of living, breathing, feeling human beings" - ME!. Yes I am obese and No you can't see my physical disability [They look like people who are not injured, simply obese.] Why do we have to judge people because they are fat, black, white, yellow, short, tall, etc. ? Can't we just have compassion and do our best to kindly educate. The photo maybe the "way of the future" based on many other factors but I would rather be kind and compassionate than "skinny" any day. That doesn't mean I don't fully appreciate living a LCHF and ketogenic lifestyle but judging people by looking at their "outsides" does not help any situation. And such judgmental attitudes do not help the LCHF "cause" if it becomes fueled by such negativity.
    Reply: #18
  18. FrankG
    Perhaps you are right Bree but surely you can see that your reading of the comments here as prejudiced or negative is YOUR interpretation, projected onto others.. you cannot know the intention of the person who posted those remarks.. can you?

    At 5;8" I was well over 300lbs for a good while.. having struggled with obesity over 25 years.. now I am down at an healthier weight but obviously not back to the same trim waistline I enjoyed in my 20's

    Can you think I am being judgmental, prejudiced, or negative towards these people? I want to help them and let them know that there is a way out of their situation,, if they want it.

    How can you imagine that I am anything but compassionate and sympathetic to them? I certainly don't blame them .. heck I went through enough years of self-blame to know differently.

    How many others do you think read this blog, who have had similar experiences?

    Would you rather ignore such issues for fear of hurting someone's feelings? Perhaps discuss it in public comments after an on-line news article? Or would you rather face it here, amongst those who might understand?

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